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5686 S Sycamore Frazen Grocery Crony_new
5686 S Sycamore Franzen Grocery DSC_3375 REPLACE_new
5686 S Sycamore Franzen Grocery DSC_3364_new
5686 S Sycamore Frazen Grocery Crony_new 5686 S Sycamore Franzen Grocery DSC_3375 REPLACE_new 5686 S Sycamore Franzen Grocery DSC_3364_new

Cornelius Franzen housed his grocery store in the building at 5686 S. Sycamore St. as part of his expanding enterprises on Sycamore. The German-born Cornelius married Louise Theys in Denver in 1900. By 1905, he operated the First and Last Chance Saloon—with Tivoli beer on tap—on the corner of Main and South Syracuse Streets, two lots south of their home. By that time, he and Louise had added two sons, Carl and Clark, to their family. Sometime during recent decades, the Franzen’s house was connected to the historic grocery store building immediately to the south.

By 1953, Clarence C. Van Devanter, who lived in the house immediately to the north, operated Van’s Grocery in the building. Later, the building housed various bars, including Swede’s Tavern (c1955), Mecca Tavern (1959–1961), Oasis Lounge (early 1980s until mid-2009), and Ned Kelly’s Irish Pub (since 2009).

Oasis patrons were the source of many local tales. For example, in the late 1980s, a group of Oasis patrons decided to call British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher late in the evening. Surprisingly, they (supposedly) got through and spoke with her. Colorado Historian Tom Noel, aka Dr. Colorado, was fond of the Oasis Lounge and included the Littleton spot on his famous bar tours of Denver.

The Franzen Grocery building was added to the Littleton Main Street Historic District in 2005 as a contributing building. It was listed as a contributing structure on the Littleton Main Street National Register of Historic Places District on April 8, 1998.